Referral of Patients with Suspected Colorectal Cancer by Family Physicians and Other Primary Care Providers

This clinical guideline examines the management of adult patients presenting in primary care settings with signs and/or symptoms of colorectal cancer. Clinical presentation (focused history and physical examination), referral, and recommendations to reduce diagnostic delay are discussed. Assessment techniques include digital rectal examination, physical examination, complete blood count (CBC), fecal occult blood test (FOBT), computed tomographic (CT) colonography and double-contrast barium enema (DCBE). Outcomes of interest are positive predictive values for colorectal cancer.